Letter from Marguerite Wilkinson to Richard Aldington
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Letter written by Marguerite Wilkinson to Richard Aldington, dated July 10, 1920.
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- 2019-08-08 16:10:39
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- Joseph Watson (ed.)
c/o Macmillan & Co. ltd. St. Martin's St. London, W. C. July 10, 1920. My dear Mr. Aldington:-- Your letter of June eleventh finds me in London and I hasten to say that I am glad you wrote. A number of months ago when I saw a brief excellent article by you in Poetry I thought of writing you, for it was the only interesting thing I had noticed in that magazine for a long time, but writing seemed intrusive and uncalled-for and I let it pass. Now to answer your criticisms. When "New Voices" appeared Miss Lowell wrote me complaining of my treatment of her work and of yours and of H. D.'S. I did not retract any statement made about her work, but I did admit that I had not written about you and H. D. as well as I should have written. What I mean by that is that I should have given more space to thorough and careful explanation of just what things I liked and disliked in your work, and to reasons for the liking and disliking. I am glad to be able to tell you that I still wish I had written that part of my book more fully. I still agree with most of the opinions expressed in "New Voices", but I scold myself continually for the way parts of the book are written. Looking through your books and H. D's for color adjectives at a shilling a pi^ece would be a very jolly way of earning a living, I assure you! I am rather too fond of "grey" myself, and so I should be willing to forgive you for liking "white" and other imagists for "chrome" and "mauve", probably. (When I wrote "New Voices", nearly two years ago, I thought there seemed to be quite a number of imagists and I was thinking of the school as a whole) The thing I objected to was the the over-emphasis on sense-impressionism, (much needed, I admit, when imagism first came into existence,) and the fact that nouns with their color adjectives were almost a mannerism with the school in general. This over-emphasis, which was an initial phase, I think you^d have pretty well outgrown, and I like your later work much better than that which you did earlier because it seems to me to reach deeper human feelings. But please include F. S. Flint among living imagists. I am beginning to be interested in his work. Perhaps it may interest you to know that I hate writing reviews, but it has been the one thing that editors and publishers would allow me to do to my own advantage, hitherto, since I can not write stories. When I wrote "New Voices" (2) I was working twelve hours a day, half of the time for magazines. That is one reason why I did not make the book I wanted to make. But I hope you will believe that I am not hostile to "stern discipline", nor to imagism. The sternest discipline is not too stern for the artist. And I am always willing to "re-consider" and learn something new about poetry, if I can. I try to be tolerant and fair. If I should ever have the pleasure of meeting you and H. D. I should be most happy to learn exactly what your artistic ideals are, now, in your maturity as artists, so that in writing about you I need never misrepresent you. And with all good wishes, believe me, Sincerely yours, Marguerita Wilkinson (Mrs. James G. Wilkinson) this is a copy of a typed transcription of the previous 2 pages
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